Once a masked superhero, Mac Gamble is a cage fighter using his infamy to attract a crowd, until the cop who ran him out of town asks him to track down a dangerous vigilante. Once an ambitious cop determined to continue in her brother's footsteps, Lana Rossini craves vengeance. The abilities she acquired in the same explosion that killed her brother allow her to hunt the streets at night for those who betrayed him. Yet, during the day she is a helpless invalid, unable to stand the thinnest light. She doesn’t expect the man sent after her to be the one whose powers she somehow stole, a man she thought abandoned her to blindness, a man she can't allow herself to love.
“You know who you’re dealing with? That’s Narc. San Mike’s hero, asshole.”
“He’s not a hero now.” She couldn’t stop looking at Narc, craving his heat, the same as when he had been Mac Gamble, an Aikido instructor with a low voice and rare brilliant smile.
“Neither are you.” His voice lashed out in a rope of silk, a rough-edged caress she had no business wanting.
His cool, merciless gaze held hers, daring her to move, to flee, to stay and challenge him. Her pulse threatened to rip out of her veins.
“My fight isn’t with you Narc.”
Mendoza wrenched under her hold, beating at her with his free hand. His fist bounced off the thin level of power she kept around her skin, using the rest to form a barrier between herself and Mac, splitting her focus, gritting her teeth in effort to keep the energy in place.
“Give me the cops you work for and it’ll be over.”
Another hard desperate tug, while Narc—she had to think of him as Narc—pushed his weight at her shields less than three feet away.
“The cops I work for? Dozens. You think I got everyone’s name?”
A fist against the shield had the same effect as a punch in the gut.
“I know how this works.” Mac’s voice snapped over her in a caress of pain and pleasure. “You’re fighting to keep focus. It’s not going to hold.”
She had no control here, in the dark, trapped in a bubble of her own power. Three years since she’d seen him last. A lifetime since he breathed life back into her lungs, that low voice screaming for her in the burning darkness.
“I thought you didn’t use your powers.” Fighting for breath and focus, she dragged Mendoza back, his wrist a taut thick wire in her rapidly numbing fingers. She could let go, face Mac and fight, blast him with power…. “Come on, Pavlic.”
Mendoza twisted again, and her shattered focus allowed him enough leeway to jerk her off balance. Mac pushed into the barrier, splintering her energy in a burst of heat, edging into her space, crowding her with that big fighter’s body.
She should have clocked him while she had the last reserve of power. Instead she held the last shreds of shields tight around her skin, morphing the light surrounding her body to make her appear even bigger. Her cape snapped with the wind, the edges reaching out as if begging Mac to touch them.