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Authors: Moira Callahan

Dangerous Secrets

BOOK: Dangerous Secrets
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Evernight
Publishing ®

 

www.evernightpublishing.com

 

 

 

Copyright© 2014 Moira Callahan

 

 

 
ISBN: 978-1-77130-962-2

 

Cover
Artist: Sour Cherry Designs

 

Editor: Laurie
Temple

 

 

 

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

 

 

WARNING:
The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is
illegal.
 
No part of this book may be
used or reproduced electronically or in print without written permission,
except in the case of brief quotations embodied in reviews.

 

This is a
work of fiction. All names, characters, and places are fictitious. Any
resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or
dead, is entirely coincidental.

 

 

 

DEDICATION

 

A huge
thank you absolutely must go out to my wonderful editor, Laurie Temple. I have
been truly blessed to have such an amazing woman helping me bring the very best
story to my readers.

 

To my
readers, thank you for all your support on this wondrous journey. Enjoy!

 

DANGEROUS SECRETS

 

C&M
Security, 2

 

Moira Callahan

 

Copyright © 2014

 

 

Prologue

 

The pressure on Mallory Thompson’s scalp preceded
the water sluicing away from her head and face. Sucking a breath into her
burning lungs, she kicked harder. She had to stay above the water. She couldn’t
let him push her down again. She didn’t think he’d let her up if he did.

“Where.
Is.
The.
Drive?” The man, whose hand was tangled in her
hair, pushed her into the lake again and then hauled her back up.

She didn’t know who he was, and she definitely
didn’t know what the fuck he was talking about. But she couldn’t say that
again, not with her body desperately trying to suck in air. Spots danced before
her eyes. Even if her vision hadn’t been impaired, she’d never be able to
identify him.

There was a lantern behind him, so his face was in
shadow. He had on a hoodie and a cap but that’s about all she knew for sure.
His hands were covered in leather gloves and he wore work boots.

The boots she knew about from the six kicks he’d
delivered to her ribs, stomach and the one to her jaw before he’d dumped her
into the lake.

His hand tightened in her hair and she reached up
with a heavy arm to try and grab his wrist.
Anything to take
some of the pressure off her poor, screaming scalp.
Then he shook her.

Mallory couldn’t hold in the whimper of pain, it
was too much. She was in absolute agony, she was wet, she was cold, she was
being dunked repeatedly to the point where she nearly drowned and now he was
doing this?

“I don’t know what you are talking about,” she
managed to get through her chattering teeth.

“Bullshit. I saw them give it to you. Where the
fuck is the fucking drive, bitch?” he screamed at her, shaking her again.

Whimpering in pain, Mallory clawed at his arm. Her
subconscious mind knew what her conscious mind was just cluing into. He was
going to kill her if she didn’t get away from him. “I don’t know what you’re
talking about. No one gave me anything, you asshole.”

Okay, calling the guy holding her life in his hands
an
asshole?
Probably not her
brightest move.

The slap she got to her face told her that. But
luck was finally on her side and she caught skin with her nails and dug in
hard, scraping at his arm, wrist, or hand, whatever it was. He let go with a
yelp.

Kicking her legs hard, she swam away from the dock
and deeper into the lake and the darkness.

“You fucking bitch!” he screamed.

Which was closely followed up by a
sound that any TV or movie watcher knew.
The
slide snapping into place on a gun.

Trying to swim harder and faster, Mallory knew she
wasn’t gaining a lot of ground. She wasn’t a great swimmer on the best of days.
But she kept going as best she could.

When she heard the first shot, she screamed and
flinched automatically. The missed strokes sent her under the water and she
came up sputtering. There was a curse from the shoreline, harsh and angry
sounding. She didn’t know where the shot had gone, but she had no new aches and
pains so she wasn’t fucking complaining.

There was another shot. It didn’t miss. She felt
the burn through her shoulder and the wind was knocked out of her. She couldn’t
keep swimming, it was too hard, too exhausting.

Time to make a choice.
So she floundered a bit more, gasping for air, making lots of noise
before she slid under the water. It wasn’t all an act, but she knew she had to
get rid of him and get out of the water.

Breaking the surface again she let out a weak sound
and then went down. She’d taken a good lungful of air and, hopefully it would
be enough.

Unfortunately she didn’t know how long to stay
under and her lungs began to burn. She needed air, and soon. Her entire body
was tired, heavy with exhaustion and her lungs were starting to scream again,
too.

Was it long enough? Maybe she needed to wait
longer? Damn it, she couldn’t.

Kicking her leaden legs, Mallory eased back to the
surface and let her face just break through. Sucking in a shallow breath, she
waited. No gunshots.

That was a good sign.

Lifting her head a bit more, she looked around
until she spotted the dock. It was empty.

No sign of her attacker.

But damn, it was a really long ways away.

Sighing, she rolled onto her back and began to kick
with her feet. It would be slow going but with her shoulder now sporting a
gunshot wound, she couldn’t swim the breaststroke, the back stroke or any other
sort of stroke.

By the time she got to the dock, she was beyond
exhausted. Her arms and legs felt like they were weighted down by Buick’s.
Kicking just a little more, she finally felt the gravel at the edge of the
lake. Rolling over onto her stomach she dug deep for just a little more energy.
With one more burst she got herself up a few more inches before collapsing.

Sleep. She just needed a little nap and then she’d
be fine. Ten minutes, fifteen tops and she’d be raring to go. Yes. Just a
little nap…

 

Chapter One

 

Peering through the glass door with trepidation,
Mallory took a shaky breath while sending a worried look over her shoulder. She
was at the right address. The sign on the building matched the name of the
company she was given. But this place was seriously high-end and way out of her
budget.

She jolted at the sharp buzzing sound. Looking
around she saw the woman at the reception desk waving her in.

Taking a slow breath, she pushed on the door and
stepped into the air-conditioned building.

The waiting area held modern, clean lined
furniture, very chic and minimalist. There were paintings on the brick walls, expensive-looking
vases on tables or in corners on the floor. It was eclectic and yet not harsh.
She liked it. In that “better not touch anything in case she broke it and therefore
bought it” way, of course.

The receptionist watched her curiously, but didn’t
rush her.
Which was good.
Mallory wasn’t sure if she
was ready to be rushed. Finally garnering another ounce of courage, she moved
over to the desk and gave the woman a shaky smile.

“Welcome to C&M Security,” the receptionist said
with a wide and friendly smile.

“Hi,” Mallory managed to whisper. Clearing her
throat, she
adjust
her large purse over her shoulder
and scraped a nail on the handle. “I’m Mallory Thompson. Detective Granger arranged
a meeting for me.”

Not that she really wanted a meeting with anyone.
No, all she wanted to do was go back to her place, curl up under her blankets
and block out the world.

The receptionist was already on her computer and
nodding. “Yes, I have you meeting with Robyn. She’s expecting you,” she said
with a smile. Popping up from her desk, she came around and indicated the
stairs. “Come on, I’ll show you to where you and Rob will be talking.”

Seeing no way out, Mallory followed the woman up
the stairs to the office space.
Obviously.
More
paintings and some photography hung on the exposed brick.
Hardwood
floors throughout, big windows letting in huge amounts of light and wide
hallways that led to various doorways.

“Did you want some coffee, tea, or water?” the
woman asked her as she showed her into an office.

“No, thank you,” she said, shaking her head.

“All right.
Settle in and I’ll let Rob know you’re here,” she said.

“Thank you,” Mallory managed to get out before the
redhead disappeared. Licking her lips she looked around the space. It was the
same eclectic mix as the rest of the place. A few older and well-cared for
pieces, some odd shots of color, photos on the walls and the large desk that
was a modern piece of art more than a work surface.

BOOK: Dangerous Secrets
13.47Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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