Never Kiss a Bad Boy(8)

By: Nora Flite

“Sure. That's fine.” She had a lovely, low voice. It was creamy, I wanted to fill my head with it.

Down the thin hall we went, beyond the bathrooms and the spare closet we used as an office. The new area was low-lit, curved booths and a second bar for special events.

Here, with the music piping through the speakers and the buzz of the crowd out front, we'd be alone.

I'd been told no one ever heard the women moaning.

I let my guest go and turned to face her. “I didn't get your name. I'm Kite, one of the owner's here. In case you didn't know.”

Her eyebrows went up to her hairline. She seemed so calm, or... something. I couldn't explain it. “I did know,” she said. “And I'm Marina.”

Chuckling, I hooked my thumbs in my pockets. “Guess my reputation gets around. I hope the ladies say good things.”

Marina finally faltered, eyes squinting. “What?”

“Uh, the girls.” Lifting my hands, I gestured helplessly. “That's why you wanted to see me in private? Because everyone brags about how good I am in the sack?”

Her lips scrunched up.

Ah fuck, I thought bitterly. Did I read her wrong? Is she not here to fuck me?

Looking me in the eye, Marina swallowed. “I think there's been a misunderstanding. I asked to see you in private for a very serious reason.”

Slowly, I let my hands fall to my sides. Marina did look serious. “Then go ahead. Spit it out.”

Her chest swelled as her lungs expanded. Even with the heavy air of expectation, I found myself drawn to her breasts. I couldn't control myself; this woman was a walking vision.

“I know who you are,” Marina said.

Blinking, I tilted my jaw. “You already told me that.”

“No. Who you really are.”

Laughing, I asked, “And who do you think I am? A playboy, a billionaire, a celebrity?”

Her voice was cool and collected. “You're a hitman.”

In that quiet room, the hum of life down the hallway seemed miles away. I'd been watching Marina with an eye of appreciation. I'd noted her hourglass figure, her nice smell—chocolate and pumpkin—and the way her lips were the color of fresh raspberries.

And then she had to go and ruin everything.

I wondered how quickly I could cover her mouth. If I was fast enough, she wouldn't even squeak. No. Stop! I bit my tongue, forcing logic into my skull. She knows I'm a hitman. How was that possible? I had to figure out what was going on before I did anything rash.

“Why would you say something like that?” I asked, my smile forced and stiff.

Marina looked at my knuckles, then to the doorway. Finally, she inhaled and met my stare. “I saw you murder Frank Montego. That day in the park, I watched everything you did.”

“And so,” I whispered, “You assume that makes me a hitman?” Not that it matters, I realized. If she actually saw me pull the trigger, she knows I'm a murderer. That was just as condemning.

She shook her head, long threads of hair tickling her shoulders. “No, the news told me that part.”

The skin on my face was wooden. Smiling was getting harder. “Then, isn't coming here to meet me a little... risky?”

Marina licked her bottom lip. It was the first sign of her nerves. “Probably. But I didn't have a choice. You're the only one who can help me.”

Inching a foot forward, I judged the gap between her face and my palms. “Why would I help you?”

“Because I have money,” she blurted. She saw it, then; I could tell from the way her pupils shrank. Marina recognized what I was considering. “Stop! You can't hurt me.”

I took another step. My fingers flexed at my hips. “I don't have much choice.” I have to keep us safe. Jacob and I... we can't let everything end here.

This girl was a liability.

What else could I do but silence her?

Maybe jumping to murder was crazy, but Marina had put me in an awful position. It only took one loose end, and my world—Jacob's world—would come undone.

No one who'd hired us as had ever seen our faces. They knew us as the Jackals, contacted us through the anonymity of the internet. The only people who could identify us were the ones about to take their last breath.

Marina had become one of them.

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