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Love’s Last Kiss
(a Deadly Force Novel)
Publication date: May 17th 2022
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Is love worth risking everything for?
Rose Guthrie, a reluctant erotic dancer, hasn’t trusted anyone since her parents ’death. Yet, to make money for her brother’s heart transplant, she agrees to deliver a sealed box to a mysterious buyer. Until the box—and the seller—disappear. Not surprised by the betrayal, her situation becomes more dangerous when she learns that a brutal arms dealer, known as the Prince, also wants the box and will kill everyone she loves for it. With one clue left, she breaks into Doom—Savannah’s violent, illegal fight club. Unfortunately, Doom’s referee—the sexy, ex-Army Ranger, Kade Dolan—stands in her way. Although she harbors a secret attraction to Kade, she can’t let him stop her. If she doesn’t deliver the box on time, she’ll lose everything. Including her own life.
Rose doesn’t trust disgraced Army Ranger, ex-con Kade Dolan, but that’s okay—he doesn’t trust himself either. Why? Because he lies to everyone about everything, including his time in Leavenworth and his job as an illegal fight club referee. Then there are his two side gigs. The first as an informant for the Prince, the leader of a secret, two-thousand-year-old private army. The second, loving from afar the beautiful, secretive Rose Guthrie. After the Prince discovers Rose is the courier of a lost 18th century artifact, he orders Kade to help her find the box before their greatest enemy does. If they succeed, Kade must return it to the Prince. If they fail, Kade must kill her.
Betrayal or death. When faced with an impossible choice, Kade can’t lie anymore, at least not when it comes to what he’s about to do the woman he loves. But when Rose uncovers Kade’s lies, they learn a terrible truth—the 18th century box holds a secret far deadlier than they imagined. A secret that could destroy them all.
Kade rubbed his forehead with his fist. How could he have made such a terrible mistake?
Since meeting Rose, he’d been unable to stay away from her, even when he’d barely known her. And now that they’d made love, he wasn’t sure he could leave her.
Yet, while he’d admitted his growing love for Rose, he’d also left out the most important details of his life. And Rose wasn’t stupid. She had to suspect he was hiding things. It was probably why, despite the passion she’d shown in his arms, she hadn’t spoken her own feelings aloud.
He couldn’t blame her. He was neither a prince nor charming. He was a man in an impossible situation. A man in love with a woman who had trust issues. A man who rarely asked for help because it made one beholden to others. A man about to commit the rest of his life to a murderous cult that dated back centuries.
He opened his eyes, determined to crush his pity party. Rose needed him, and they still had work to do. They had twenty-eight hours to meet the Prince’s deadline, and they still had no idea where to find that box.
When he saw the cup of hot coffee on his bedside table, his throat closed up. He’d never get enough of her sexually, but her inherent thoughtfulness was what made his heart brim with other unfamiliar emotions. Emotions he struggled to understand, much less define.
Yes, he loved her. But his feelings for her were so much more intense than he’d expected. Then again, other than Nin and his mother, he had little experience in loving women. Infrequent sex with random females from the club didn’t count.
He swung his legs over the edge of the bed and moved slowly, testing each tight muscle group before standing upright. Unfortunately, King George, who’d been guarding the bathroom door, decided Kade had committed an Act of Aggression. The cat bared his teeth.
Kade held out his hands and backed up. “Whoa, kitty.”
He hit the edge of the bed and fell onto his naked ass. The pillow flew across the room, and King George pounced after it. A moment later, Rose emerged from the bathroom with a towel wrapped around her body. Wet strands of hair hung past her shoulders.
He drew the throw blanket over his lap and tried not to stare at her bare thighs. The towel acted more like a short, strapless dress, exposing way too much soft, bare skin.
The cat hissed at him again, and she shooed him away. “King George, be nice!”
The cat left the room with his back arched and his tail high in the air. As if to say to Kade, kiss this.
“I’m sorry.” Rose clutched the towel, keeping it tight around herself. “I’d like to say King George isn’t normally this nasty in the morning, but that would be a lie.”
Actually, Kade wasn’t thinking about the cat at all. He was too distracted by the drops of water that rolled down the curve of her neck and slipped between her breasts. His body hardened with one part in particular becoming almost painful. Needing a distraction, he took the mug and inhaled the scent of roasted beans. “I don’t mind King George. Nin had a cat like that once. It took a while, but I eventually won her over.”
She took a step forward. “How long is ‘a while’?”
He sipped his coffee and sighed. It was perfect. Hot, black, and not too bitter. “Seven years.”
She laughed and shifted awkwardly, her hands grasping the towel. “You don’t give up, do you?”
Sharon is a librarian who once studied dress design in the couture houses of Paris and now writes of novels of suspense, adventure, and love. A caretaker of Donut the one-eyed rescue dog, she’s addicted to snapping photos and eating Oreos.
She writes the bestselling Deadly Force romantic suspense series where smart, sexy women teach their alpha males that Grace always defeats Reckoning.