Title: WetWork, Episode 2
Series: WetWork, Dark Man Case Files
Author: Cadence Denton
Genre: Romantic Suspense
WetWork, Dark Man Case Files, Episode 2 is a gritty, action-packed romantic serial (25k). Filled with pulsing passion and heart pounding intrigue, it is the second episode in this hot, new series by author, Cadence Denton. Each installment ends in a cliff-hanger.
Just once Dark Man would like to go a day without having to dodge bullets. Just freaking once. However, since Angel crash-landed in his life, that’s all he’s been doing.
Angel feels pulled in opposite directions. On the one hand, she wants to admit the truth to DM, but on the other, she knows she must remain loyal to Damien, her boss and DM’s identical twin. What troubles her most is can she trust Damien or will he put her head on the chopping block? Then there’s one small problem.
She’s attracted to both men.
The leader of the super-secret Guild, Damien has cut all ties with his estranged brother. Or has he? One thing DM knows for certain, if Damien is stirring this pot then it’s poisonous.
When the Department and Chernyy start to doubt their agent’s loyalty, then Dark Man and Angel have no choice but to trust each other and hope their skills will keep them alive.
The mansion squat on the shore of Indian Creek Island like a well-fed whore, its lights a sparkling diadem in the south Florida night.
A movie executive who’d ruled Hollywood back in the eighties built Casa Torres, more a castle than a house. The mansion was presently owned by one Enrico Motosierra Torres, the head of an up-and-coming Mexican drug cartel. He’d received the nickname, Motosierra, from his penchant for using a chainsaw to cut body parts off competitors, disobedient workers… anyone and everyone who pissed him off.
Mexican drug lords were notorious for their violence and Moto’s goal was to be the most sadistic of them all. “Respect is good,” he was fond of saying, “but to be feared… that is best.”
Two Bentleys, several Rolls-Royce Phantoms, a few Jaguars, and even a Ferrari was lined up in the long, cobblestone drive waiting for parking attendants to tuck them safely away. King Palm trees, rising like majestic pillars into the tropical night, were carefully scattered over the manicured grounds while a large circular fountain shot a full dozen jets of water into the night air. The liquid torrent was drowned out by high energy dance music spilling out of the mansion. Even here in Miami where excess was the norm, Moto’s parties were legendary.
Like pilgrims traveling to Mecca, guests lined the stairs, waiting to enter the mansion. A man and a woman climbed from the black Ferrari and mounted the stairs leading to the entrance, which was impressive with its huge double doors made from exotic jungle woods, leaded glass and wrought iron.
He was a Viking of a man, standing six feet six inches and rigged out in all black. His midnight hair flowed artlessly about his shoulders and a touch of kohl lined his eyes, emphasizing their steel gray color. His lean face, with its trademark three-day beard, was striking. A thin white scar running from temple to jaw gave him an air of danger guaranteeing second and third looks from both women and men.
The man placed a wide palm on the small of his companion’s back—a pretty young woman whose athletic figure was perfectly displayed in a royal blue short jumpsuit with six-inch silver knee-length gladiator sandals circling shapely calves.
Together they reached the top of the stairs and played follow-the-leader behind the other guests until they stood at the doorway where a three-man security detail waited.
Guard Number One frisked the guests, taking his time with the women to inspect inside their bodices and between their legs while Guard Number Two wielded a hand held metal detector. Guard Number Three stood a short distance away, holding an automatic rifle at the ready.
When it was the couple’s turn, Guard Two carefully waved the metal detector over the man while Mr. Grab Happy went to work on the pretty redhead. The big man growled a protest and moved closer when Guard One slid his hands inside her shorts.
“Stand down, esse,” Guard Three commanded, snapping his rifle up and shoving the barrel into the big man’s chest.
“Hands off, esse,” the big man countered and in a sudden move, snatched the rifle and pointed it at the trio. “I said hands off.” The men glared at each other for a tense moment.
“It’s okay,” the woman said, tugging on the big man’s arm. “Jesus, I need a drink. Can’t we just go inside? Does everything have to be so difficult?”
The guard who’d held the rifle laughed, said something in Spanish and the other two joined him. Grinning, the big man shrugged and handed him back the weapon.
“You’re clean. Go in,” Guard Three said, waving them on with the rifle.
The woman threaded her fingers through her date’s and tugged him past the entrance onto a floor made of glossy white Italian marble. A giant chandelier, with a thousand glittering crystal pendalogues, dominated the great room.
What part of do not engage don’t you understand, Dark Man? The handler snarled in the hunter’s headset.
“I was just staying in character, base,” DM murmured, his hand at the small of Elle’s back. “Moto’s crew would be suspicious if I didn’t challenge them.” Which was true, but even if it wasn’t, he’d be damned if he’d stand by and watch the son of a bitch hand rape Elle.
“I think he deserves a Golden Globe,” she added, tossing a grateful glance over her shoulder, her heels clicking on the shiny stone. They paused at the balcony and looked out on the massive room beneath them.
Sweeping twin staircases followed the curved walls leading down to a ground level great room a full acre in size. Priceless artwork covered the walls broken up by curtained alcoves scattered throughout the room. A club sized dance floor, teaming with people, was in the center of the room complete with DJ booth and a laser light show shooting sparkles across the walls. The bass heavy electronic music made the balustrade DM’s hand rested on throb in time to the beat. Further back, the great room’s glass rear walls had been retracted. Opening onto the tropical night, both music and dancers spilled outside to the Olympic sized pool. The rear of the estate ended at the gulf. DM noted several luxury yachts parked at Moto’s dock. He also noticed most of the guests milling about the pool were naked.
DM plucked a champagne flute from the tray held by a waiter and offered it to Elle.
“I see one, two… make that three of Moto’s lieutenants and several representatives of the Columbian growers’ conglomerate,” Elle whispered through the link, the glass masking her mouth.
The security detail scattered so obviously around the mansion and grounds weren’t the real danger. High powered cameras with the ability to zoom in and count the hairs on a flea’s back were. Not to mention the lip-reading software now standard in most high level systems.
Have you located the target?
“He’s at the foot of the stairs, greeting guests,” DM said, dropping a kiss on Elle’s shoulder.
That was a bit of luck there. With a little more they could get the job done and be away well under the allotted time.
Proceed, the handler said.
DM followed Elle, his eyes sweeping the room, searching out the nooks, looking for enemies and cameras, but the laser lighting and the crushing crowd made it difficult. Instead he focused on the welcoming committee.
Moto had two bodyguards flanking him. One shifted and DM saw the glint of his pistol in the shoulder holster beneath his tuxedo jacket. Both men had the hard countenances and shifting gazes that bespoke serious training. For once, it was nice to see the briefing for this job had been on target, he thought sourly. Bad intelligence made his job harder. Not impossible, just harder. Tonight, he’d like easy.
I’m an odd mixture of one-part dreamer, one-part realist, and two parts stubborn–which can be a positive thing if you’re a writer. Not content to write in just one genre, I write dark paranormal romance, time travel, light science fiction, romantic comedy, and gritty romantic thrillers. Told you I was stubborn (that and a little crazy!). Besides, doing the same thing day after day can become boring and we can do with a little less boring, right?
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