No mercy. No pity. No women.
Bain has always worked solo, refusing to allow anyone to lord over him. His life has been fucked up enough, and he’s learned trust comes with a price. When he finally accepts an invitation to work for Killer of Kings, he regrets the decision after his first contract. It was supposed to be simple, now there’s a curvy little temptation tied up in his basement.
Scarlett struggles to move up in a career where appearances are everything. When she lands a risky interview with a known crime boss, she hopes it will be her big break as a reporter. Instead, she’s caught up in the middle of an assassination and taken hostage by the hitman. She wants to hate the tattooed devil, but finds herself intrigued by his story. Is it the reporter in her wanting to know more…or the woman falling for a broken man?
“I don’t understand,” she said.
“You asked why I’m alone.” He walked into his bedroom. Bain twirled her chair around, with her still securely on it, as he left the en-suite. “That’s why. I was forced to be with so many different women for so many fucking years that it numbed me. Emotions, love, everything—it’s all gone. Why would I choose to be with a woman now? I just need to be left alone.”
“People can change, recover from unspeakable horrors. I’ve seen it. I know it’s possible.”
He put on black boxer briefs that hugged his hard ass and strong legs. Scarlett watched him walk about the room from the closet to the dresser. He finally tugged on a pair of navy jogging pants but didn’t put on a shirt. She tried not to be too obvious as she snuck in peeks of him. Would he be as hard as he looked? Bain settled on the corner of his king-sized bed, staring at her with such intensity that her words caught in her throat.
“You have no idea the horrors I’ve lived, sweetheart. I promise whatever you’ve been through is a cake walk compared to my shit life.”
“There’s good left in everyone,” she whispered. Scarlett wouldn’t let him drag her down. She’d been fighting depression for too many damn years. She was barely a shell of woman, fragile and empty. She wanted to think positive, to improve herself and move upward—and she firmly believed Bain could do the same.
He smiled, but it didn’t reach his eyes. “Those bastards said I was handsome, irresistible to women. That’s why they used me.” Bain stood and approached her, grabbed the edge of her chair and dragged it back to his bed. He sat back down on his mattress, only a breath between them now. “All that’s changed now,” he said.
“What do you mean?”
Bain took her wrist and placed her palm on his chest. His skin was so firm and warm, her pussy throbbing from just that one touch. “Feel me. Really feel me.”
She wasn’t sure what point he was making until she began to smooth her fingertips over his chest, his shoulders, and then his face. With a gentle caress, she traced all the ridges of old scars she hadn’t really noticed until now. He was covered in them. To say she was shocked would be an understatement.
“Not so handsome anymore, eh? I try to hide this shit with ink, but it’s not the physical scars that bother me the most. They’ve fucked up my head so bad that killing’s the only thing that keeps me sane.”
She swallowed hard. “I think you’re perfect.” The words slipped from her lips before she really thought better. It wasn’t a lie. Bain was the roughest, scariest man she’d ever seen, but also irresistible and hardcore in a way that made her body light up for the first time in her life.
Her hand was still on his cheek, his rough stubble tickling her fingers. She noticed the thick scars under his eye, and she was tempted to kiss it better.
Whatever she thought they’d shared—a moment, a breakthrough—was gone when he bolted to his feet as if her touch scorched him.
He paced back and forth, his chest heaving as if he’d just run a two-minute mile. What had she said to upset him? Had she pegged him wrong? Was he ready to kill? Maybe he was about to prove her wrong once again, just as Jerry and Michael had. She didn’t want to believe it, but maybe some people were beyond redemption.