D.A.R.K. Cover, Inc.
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Military Romance, Romantic Suspense
Publisher: ARe Books
Date of Publication: March 1, 2016
Word Count: 20000
Cover Artist: Erin Dameron-Hill
To survive the present and have a future, she must trust a man from her past.
Shelly Marie Dixon is a woman with a scary past. Literally. Never able to settle in one place because of the man set on tormenting her. After five years of struggling to move on with her life, she goes back to the man she left years ago. Hopefully, he will help her and not brush her aside.
Adam Wilder, eldest brother and co-founder of D.A.R.K Cover, Inc., never in his wildest dreams expected to find his lost love sitting in the lobby of his company building. No way he’s letting her face this danger alone. If it takes all of D.A.R.K’s resources he will risk it. Whatever it takes to keep her safe. Problem is, will he be able to keep it professional, because one look at her and he wants to go back to how things were, way back when.
The only way that is going to happen is if she’ll believe him when he says: “Trust me.”
Adam Wilder scowled as he strode through the winter snow to the plowed path leading to the D.A.R.K. Cover, Inc. building. His shoulder still ached from the bullet that he’d received in the last month. He could do for a rest, no argument.
Go to Belize as I did. It’ll do you a world of good.
His youngest brother Wild’s words echoed through his mind as he yanked the outer door open and pushed into the heat. He tugged on the cuff of his black leather glove and headed for the stairs. He had too damn much paperwork waiting for him.
“Adam? Adam, do you have a sec?”
He paused three steps before the stairs. His sister-in-law Karen—who doubled as their secretary—called his name.
“Can you open the closet, please?”
He peered over his shoulder to see her carrying a stack of boxes. Adam dropped his bag and hurried to her side. “What are you doing? Where’s Rhodi? He shouldn’t let you carry so much.”
“I’m not an invalid.”
He grunted and took the four boxes from her, smiling down on her short blonde hair. “Never said you were. Implied my brother is a lazy bastard, but never that you’re an invalid.”
She punched him and, solely because he liked her, he gave the obligatory grunt. An act that earned him another hit. She opened the door and he maneuvered by to place the boxes down on the table before sliding them onto the steel grey shelf.
“How’s my nephew?”
“Demanding, turning more like his daddy.” She rocked back on her heels, hands in pockets. “Never imagined I’d enjoy being a mom. He’s everything to me.”
“Brayden’s a great kid. Go on, I’m sure you’ve got other things to do.”
She smiled and nodded, the twinkle in her eyes making him wonder if she’d not waited for him to do it. He didn’t mind really.
Ten minutes later, he left and headed back to swipe his bag, then took the stairs two at a time. He tossed his bag to land near the black leather couch as he continued to the large desk, also black, and sat heavily.
He needed to get away. His last mission had taken more from him than it should have. More than he cared to admit. Moreover, the problem was, it shouldn’t have for it had been a babysitting gig. Woman and her son, hiding from the ex-husband’s parents who—if he did say so himself—were some ruthless bastards.
For the next two hours he took care of paperwork, lining up other jobs and making notes on completed ones. His phone buzzed and he hit the button with the pen. “Yes?”
“Could you come down here please?”
Adam didn’t hesitate, he wasn’t fond of the tremor in her voice. “On my way.” He grabbed his Glock, made sure the magazine was full, and shoved it in the back of his waistband as he hurried to the door. He took the stairs and pushed through the door to find his sister-in-law sitting at her desk, watching for him. Scanning the area, he didn’t see anyone and met her gaze once more.
“What’s going on?”
“There’s someone here to see you.”
Another look around their waiting room. No one was there. “Who are you talking about, Karen?”
The door to the bathroom opened and a small figure stepped out, ball cap pulled low over the face, so he couldn’t tell who it was.
He ran another perusal of her. Her fear was obvious and her suspicion. He glanced back to Karen, who shook her head to his unasked question of why she called him. Derek had a way of making women feel safe, he was the lighthearted one. Not Adam.
“She asked for you by name,” Karen whispered, answering the question as to why it was him.
Raking a hand through his hair, he stepped forward. “You asked to see me?” he queried, willing her to lift her gaze.
She raised a hand and removed her hat, simultaneously tilting her chin. Dark red curls tumbled free as he was speared by a pair of emerald green eyes he never thought he’d see again in his lifetime. His lungs were empty and it took a moment for him to comprehend, his brain reminding him to breathe.
“Shelly Marie?” Surely it had to be a mistake he was seeing her before him.
“I know I’m the last person you want to see, Adam, but I need your help.” That pink tongue of hers darted out to dampen her lips. “Please.”
About the Author:
Aliyah Burke is an avid reader and is never far from pen and paper (or the computer). She loves to hear from her readers and can be reached here, or feel free to apply to join her yahoo group at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aliyah_burke.
She is married to a career military man, they have a German Shepherd, two Borzoi, and a DSH cat. Her days are spent sharing her time between work, writing, and dog training.