Black and Blue (Page 24)

Black and Blue (Otherworld Assassin #2)(24)
Author: Gena Showalter

She locked those thoughts down.

“Is this not the bathroom?” she asked, making sure to slur her words.

“Turn. Around. Now. You won’t like what happens if you don’t.”

“Okay, okay, you don’t have to be so rude about it,” she grumbled—then rammed her knee into his groin.

With a strangled bellow he hunched over, struggling to breathe, and she lined up at his side to slam the back of her elbow into his mastoid process. His body went limp as his brain tissue rapidly compressed, and he collapsed onto the carpet, well and truly out for the count.

“Sorry, bloke, but you picked the wrong side. And you called me ma’am!”

She peeked through a crack in the door. Half-clad dancers sat in front of a row of vanity mirrors, checking their hair and makeup. No one paid a bit of attention to the entrance as she slipped inside the employees-only area.

To her right was a closed door with the name Timothy Mercer in the center. Brilliant. Evie strode forward and twisted the lock. It held. After a quick glance behind her—still good—she pulled the necessary tools from her purse and got to work.

“Hey, what are you doing?” a female snapped from behind her. “You’re not supposed to be back here.”

Evie pasted a bright smile on her face before turning and facing the brunette who’d been Blue’s opening act. “Hi. I’m Chlamydia Jones, the new stripper. Hired only a few hours ago.” Too chirpy, Black. Dial it down a notch. “I was told to speak with Mr. Mercer.”

Green eyes narrowed with suspicion. “Mr. Mercer isn’t in.”

“Dang. That sucks.” I tried to do this the nice way. Evie had worn three rings, just in case. In the center of each, under a jewel, was a needle she’d loaded with poison of her own creation; they’d once been trademarks of her mission work. She thumbed the diamond from Wrath, her most-used toxin, and clasped the girl’s hands. “Can you please—”

“Ow,” Brunette said, just before yanking free to clutch her stomach.

“Are you all right?” Evie asked, faking concern.

The girl shook her head. As her skin turned a putrid shade of green, she ran as fast as her feet would carry her to the nearest receptacle, where she vomited the entire contents of her stomach . . . and maybe even the stomach itself.

Behind Evie, the door swung open, and a hard hand seized her arm, wrenching her backward. The moment she was inside the office, the door closed, sealing her inside. With Blue.

She recognized the hum of his power.

Slowly she pivoted. He wore a T-shirt and jeans, all hints of Mr. Hammer eradicated, and yet, as soon as their eyes met, there was a suspended moment where all she could remember was the feel of his erection rubbing between her legs, and the sharp, desperate need of her body.

All she could think was More.

“Stop staring and tell me what you’re doing back here,” he demanded.

O-kay. So he didn’t feel or think the same. Flushing, she said, “I came to give you a review. After a shaky start, you—”

“We will never speak of this again. Do you hear me?”

Can’t laugh. “Consider this blackmail material.” She told him what she’d learned.

“Confirmation that Star is involved.” He nodded. “We’ll have to search his house. Among other things.”

Missionspeak. Good. The best way to get back on track. “Found anything in here?”

“Not yet.” He stomped to the desk and tapped away at the computer keyboard. “I’m loading the club’s security feed for the past three weeks onto a flash drive and erasing today’s activities.”

Thank God. Replaying Jack Hammer’s debut—and her reaction to it—would have been humiliating.

“All right. Done,” he said, removing the flash drive.

“So we’re ready to leave the club?”

“Yes. And if you can get me out without letting anyone grope me, I’ll admit you’re the better agent.”

She snorted—then inwardly cursed. Did the man have to be so witty and likable? “Deal.”

Ten

EVIE KEPT SURPRISING HIM.

At the club, she’d handled the patrons and employees with equal skill. Hell, she’d even handled Blue.

He’d lost himself in the pleasure of grinding on her, forgetting their goal, their audience, until she reminded him.

She’d begged so prettily.

Begging. Completely unlike her. It had startled him back to his senses.

Mentally and physically, he couldn’t seem to control his reactions to her.

Can’t worry about that now.

They’d had to ditch her car. Whoever had ordered the earlier chase—hit?—was still out there, and Evie was now . . . no longer Evie. She was Miss Blond Boobies, and he freaking hated it. When he wasn’t grinding on her, of course. He much preferred her luscious dark hair and slender curves.

Concentrate. Going back to her place would have been stupid, giving away their identities, no matter what they looked like, so he’d offered no protest when she stole a truck and drove him to a safe house she swore no one knew about.

And why would he protest? Watching Evie steal a car was like watching sexy female auto-mechanic  p**n  on set. He was still hard.

You’ve been hard for two days.

“You quit the agency. Why did you keep a safe house?” he asked as he cased the place. It was small but virtually undetectable, hidden underneath a middle-class neighborhood where all of the homes above it were the same shape and color. There was only one entrance, and that was concealed in a darkened alcove next to the district enzyme tower half a mile away.

Evie had reinforced the walls with alien metal that could withstand a nuclear attack, and hung countless monitors, all watching the surrounding area from different angles. The only furniture was a bed, a chair, and a desk cluttered with a computer, papers, and mechanical parts and equipment he didn’t recognize.

“I like to be prepared,” she said with a shrug.

He was the same. He collected safe houses the way other men collected sexual mementos, ensuring he had someplace to go in every corner of the world. Maybe one day he’d give Evie a tour and impress the hell out of her.

He stiffened. Give her a tour? Impress her?

Seriously? Michael, John, and Solo weren’t even aware of half of his holdings, and he wanted to share with her?

Scowling, Blue settled at the desk and booted up the computer. Opening the contents of the flash drive would take a while.