Read Bombshell - Men of Sanctuary Series, Book Three Online

Authors: Danica St. Como

Tags: #mystery, #Contemporary Romantic Suspense, #woman in man's world of business, #Law Enforcement, #romance, #Suspense, #adventure, #military, #action, #Danica St. Como, #erotic romance, #men in uniform, #M/F Romance, #Explosives, #male/female

Bombshell - Men of Sanctuary Series, Book Three

Noble Romance Publishing, LLC

Bombshell – Men of Sanctuary Series, Book Three

ISBN 978-1-60592-876-0

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Copyright 2012 Danica St. Como

Cover Art by Fiona Jayde

Edited by Mary Harris

This book may not be reproduced or used in whole or in part by any existing means without written permission from the publisher. Contact Noble Romance Publishing, LLC at PO Box 467423, Atlanta, GA 31146.

This book is a work of fiction and any resemblance to persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental. The characters are products of the author’s imagination and used fictitiously.

Dedication

To my brother, the Marine, who loves to blow things up.

Blurb

A one-night stand never appealed to Kailani Holokai, especially at a demolitions symposium in L.A., her first solo run. So, what are the odds that, after trying desperately to forget a volcanic romp with a nameless stranger in his hotel suite—a man who was totally her match in the sexual arena—petite, green-eyed Keko, explosives expert, would find him waiting for her at a podunk airport terminal in Maine, at the request of the FBI?

Former Navy SEAL Brian MacBride, sheriff of Catamount Lake, and Keko, the new owner of a successful demolitions company and its lead explosives expert, create sparks of the wrong kind as they struggle to avoid each other. Keko’s job: to discover who hired a local recluse to build a special device—the same type of device that killed Keko’s father—and why.

Can headstrong, unwilling Keko put aside her fear of a relationship with Mac long enough to discover the real plot, the plot that could rattle the nation’s security at the highest level—when she can’t bear to be in the same room with him?

However, being in the same bed is another story.

Prologue

Sunday

Jesus jumped-up Christ, I’m such a ho. When did I become a ho?
What the hell was I
thinking? Thinking? I
wasn’t
thinking. My hoo-hah was thinking. And the man smelled like
wintergreen, fer chrissakes, and I love the scent of wintergreen. Jeez, Loueeze, I didn’t even get
his name. Or his business card. Or his cell phone number. I don’t know where he lives. Or,
heaven forbid, if he’s married. Shit, wouldn’t
that
be a bummer. Then again, I’ll never see him
again—which is an even bigger bummer
.

The only verbalization Keko Holokai recalled using the night before had been,

“Ooh, baby, do me like that again!”

Hand to her forehead, she moaned aloud at the memory.

The Demolition & Explosive Ordnance Disposal Professionals Symposium had ended. At checkout time, attendees scurried like centipedes when their rock gets lifted.

The Los Angeles International Airport overflowed with impatient crowds, the flights filled with hundreds of departing bomb experts.

Business class had been overbooked. Keko’s choices were to wait another day, or move to economy class. Since her itinerary did not allow for the extra day, economy class won. Being squashed in her window seat by a giant Hawaiian man, who took up both the center and aisle seats and who smelled sweetly of frangipani, grated on Keko’s last nerve. Not only did her head ache, but so did the muscles of her inner thighs—as well as other, more intimate body parts, which she refused to acknowledge.

To add to the physical and emotional turmoil, she’d discovered rug burns on her knees and elbows when she’d showered that morning. The sage green capris would hide the knees. But, how to keep her elbows hidden, dress appropriately for Honolulu in late summer, yet not grab unwanted attention? She opted for rubbing a bit of liquid foundation on the red blotches, then prayed the stuff didn’t get all melty and rub off on her clothes.

The Hawaiian continued to needle her in his soft singsong voice. “Perhaps the next time you’ll heed my advice, my little blossom. Would I ever give you
bad
advice?”

Trapped by his bulk, she couldn’t even escape to the aisle.

“Makaha, my head is pounding off my shoulders and my gut is churning. Please, I beg you, shut your
poi
hole. Let me rest in peace. If you don’t, I’m going to slice off your shiny black ponytail, then feed it to the sharks. You’ll never go to the happy luau in the sky if the sharks eat your ponytail.” As a curse, it wasn’t bad for making it up on the spur of the moment.

He didn’t miss a beat. “You’re such a
malihini
.” He thumped his chest. “I am Ka
maka
, the beloved one, not
Ma
kaha, the fierce. I’m just saying, the dude was like a total fox, totally buff, totally hot … but I warned you to slow down, didn’t I? I tried to tell you that you
cannot
mainline Long Island Iced Teas like they’re wimpy wine coolers, my little coconut. Did you listen?
Noo
, of course not. And poking him in his luscious manly chest because he didn’t agree with you about the latest polymer compound to come from Navy Research was unladylike in the extreme.”

“Makaha, you’re a gay Hawaiian demolitions expert. Other than relying on you for fashion advice, or asking which beverages to serve with dinner, why should I listen to you about dating? You haven’t gotten laid in
how
long? A year? Two years? So, I swear to God if you don’t shut your yap … .”


Ooh
, girlfriend, that’s harsh.” Kamaka
hmphed
, then crossed his arms over his massive, Aloha-shirted middle. “I’m just saying … .”

Keko slid the puny airline pillow from behind her head, plastered it against her right ear to muffle the sound of his unwanted words.

Kamaka ignored Keko’s rudeness. “Kailani, darling, as I was saying, if that big spectacular stud
really
gave your poor neglected hoo-hah the workout it so richly deserved—and I am
so
totally jealous—then I don’t see what the problem—
oof
!” Her elbow caught him in the gut. “Damn, girl, you are a mean bitch!”

She glanced at her watch. “In just over five hours I must deal with my mother, and I have no desire to
deal
with my mother. Why must we visit now? We could be heading to Massachusetts and home sweet home. I could crawl into the comfort of my own nice soft bed, instead of winging it over the Pacific.”

The packed jetliner shuddered as it rose to a higher cruising altitude. Her stomach lurched. “You let me worry about my hoo-hah. Now,
please
be quiet so I can get some sleep.”

Kamaka shifted his bulk to get more comfortable, squashing Keko even more.

“Honolulu’s airport is just over five hours from LA, girlfriend, but at least a dozen hours from Boston. So, we’re already halfway there. Good planning on Grandmother Iekika’s part so you can visit the family in Maui for a few days. As far as seeing your mother, she likes me more than she likes you. She
misses
me;
you
, she tolerates. And because we both know if you’re already in Maui and don’t show up for Aolina’s new gallery showing
and
in enough time to dress appropriately, she’ll send her squad of flying monkeys to snatch you up by your hair.”

“Makaha, please don’t assault me with logic right now. I need recuperative rest, and you’re taking unfair advantage.”

But she couldn’t sleep. Closing her eyes didn’t pose a problem. The difficulty surfaced when she couldn’t blank out the previous night’s images of the tall man’s stunning hazel eyes. Or the feel of his incredible physique, naked, and perfectly aligned against her body. Or of her hands tangled in his thick, toffee-colored, sexy, Hugh Grant mop of hair as his mouth …
ahh, hell
… .

Chapter One

Monday

“Chief, old man Smitty seems to have come up missing.”

Deputy Joe Collins tossed his hat on his boss’s desk. “He didn’t make his usual grocery run, missed his Friday baked lasagna dinner at the Hungry Bear Café. You know how he feels about Bertie’s lasagna. Folks are worried about him.”

Sheriff Brian MacBride rolled back his chair, stretched his legs, massaged his temples. Jet lag had kicked his butt after the West Coast conference, but he admitted that other achy body parts weren’t technically due to jet lag.
Those
aches were due to the exotic emerald-eyed wild child with shiny, waist-long black hair, who first accosted him in the hotel lounge over a difference of opinion, then damned near raped him in the elevator.

By the time they’d reached the door to his suite, her little black cocktail dress had slid up her thighs, and her shapely legs were wrapped around his waist. His hands had cupped her firm ass cheeks as her sleek arms slid around his neck. The heat in her kisses had made him weak in the knees, which definitely interfered with his ability to swipe the key card to open the damned door to his suite. It hadn’t helped matters that after her first hot kiss, his cock stiffened enough to shatter shagbark hickory nuts. He’d never actually been jumped by a woman to be her boy toy for the night.

Then there was the tattoo
.

Sometime during their hours-long romp, Mac had impatiently slid the
Welcome,
Dear Gues
t fruit basket off a side table, then lifted his partner’s sweat-slicked body to the polished table top. Just the right height for his heavy, straining cock to slide into her tight, passion-engorged pussy. Again.

By the glow of a reading lamp, the mirror over the table reflected the intricate lines and eddies of bright greens and blues and golds etched into her skin. Colors swirled throughout a mythical phoenix that erupted from a bed of orange flame and black ash.

The bird of legend came alive as its owner writhed in Mac’s arms, from the unfurled wingtips that reached from one slender shoulder to the other, to the crested head at the base of her neck, to the magnificent tail that ended just above the crevice of her perfect ass.

With a heavy sigh, he shook himself from his reverie.

“Joe, give Abigail O’Connell a call, will ya? Can’t hurt to have our trusty game warden keep a sharp eye out for Smitty.”

“Aye, aye, chief.”

Collins glanced at his boss. “Not for nothin’, but you appear to be suffering from a severe case of Monday morning black-ass.”

Monday morning black-ass, indeed. I need about twelve hours of uninterrupted sleep on a
soft bed in a nice cool, dark room, not to go chasin’ after some loony old man who’s probably out
drowning worms at his favorite fishing hole
. Mac shifted in his seat, groaned quietly to avoid attracting additional attention and more remarks
.

I can’t believe I didn’t ask that black-haired fireball for her name, or get a freakin’ phone
number, or a business card, or something. I’m so out of practice. Then again, the cover of the
airline ticket sticking out of her purse said Hawaii, which is about as far as one can get from
Maine. Not likely to run into her in the produce section of the Sugarhouse Farm Market on
Snowshoe Street, in beautiful downtown Catamount Lake.

“Let’s get this over with.”
And maybe keep my mind off other things
. He sighed, rose, stretched, cracked everything that needed cracking. He checked his service piece and ammo, lifted his hat from the peg, then settled it firmly on his head.

“C’mon, Joe, grab your cover. Let’s go visit the worrisome Mr. Smith to see if he’s at home.”

He tossed his deputy the keys. “You drive.”

Ben Smith lived about half an hour from the village of Catamount Lake, over hill and dale and into the deep woods. Mac appreciated Smith’s woodworking talents, how the man had attached several well-built wooden structures to the main cabin, which was more like a story-and-a-half log ranch house. The entire collection of buildings ended up shaped like a large U.

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