USA Today Bestselling Author
Welcome to a brand-new connected series of intrigue, betrayal, and … murder, from the USA Today best-selling author Dale Mayer. A series with all the elements you’ve come to love, plus so much more… including psychics!
A betrayal from within has Terkel frantic to protect those he can, as his team falls one by one, from a murderous killer he helped create.
With the bulk of his team down, Terk tries to establish a new base, while struggling to heal the team through the special connection each has. Damon is concerned about finding Tasha, one of their admins, and keeping her safe. But, without any secure place to take her, Damon’s making do with the little they have—whether she’s happy about his plan or not.
Tasha, barely surviving an assassination attempt, is not sure who to trust. When Damon comes to check on her, she can only hope her instincts and her heart are right about him. This man meant everything to her for the years they’d worked together, but he’d always kept her at arm’s reach. Now to learn that he and Terk are the only fully cognizant members of her old team, she wants to help but doesn’t want to risk her life … again.
Still struggling with their new reality, both Tasha and Damon need to find out who did this to them. It’s the only way to get their lives back—and to have a future together …
The opening chapter of this book is hair-raising as we learn Terkel’s team has been, I’m going to say attacked, after being disbanded. Most of their abilities are gone or compromised with the exception of Terkel. He has another problem as well and that is approaching Ice and Levi’s compound where his twin brother Merk resides and works.
Damon is the only team member with Terkel at this time, he feels something but has some of his ability. Now they are trying to locate the rest of their team.
Terk appears not to have been affected because he was doing what he calls maintenance. Now the task is to locate everyone. Tasha is the first of the team Damon goes to find. She’s one of their Admin IT specialists. What he finds at her apartment scares him, but as he’s updating Terk she pokes her head out of the apartment across the way.
Talking to Tasha and realizing it wasn’t just the Team that has been affected, they call the other admins. The first, Mera is with a friend but was wounded, she wants nothing to do with anyone. Their other admin, a newcomer to the team Wilson was yet another story.
Terk, Damon and Tasha work on getting set up in a warehouse, one that’s not as secure as they’d like but would have to do.
This is a favorite scene.
When the door opened at the back of the warehouse, she jumped, startled, and then walked in Terk. He took one look at her, and she saw the fatigue and the worry clearly on his face. She raced toward him, and, just before she reached him, his arms opened up and wrapped around her. He held her close, gently rubbing her back.
“I’m so glad they missed you,” he murmured.
She felt the tears in her eyes. Something was so damn strong and so … almost stalwart about Terk. Everybody had had their own particular qualities, but something extra was about Terk as a leader. He was the most compassionate and empathetic man whom she’d ever met. Yet he could be as hard and as cold as ice, when the situation dictated. But he always paid a high price. And unfortunately she’d seen that time and time again. When she finally stepped back, she brushed the tears from her eyes. “Mera is alive, but she’s terrified.”
He nodded. “Who isn’t?”
She winced at that. “I was hoping you would tell me that it was all fine and that you already had it all well in hand.”
He gave a bark of laughter. “I would if I could, but it’s not quite so simple.”
“No,” she murmured, “it isn’t.” She looked around. “I see boxes upon boxes.”
“Yes.” He nodded. “New equipment.”
“What kind of equipment?” she asked, walking over and studying the contents. She saw new computers with actual hard drives, extra bits and pieces in open boxes, and monitors.
“Can you set this up?” Terk asked.
She nodded. “I absolutely can, but that doesn’t mean it has any place to go. Particularly in a place like this. We had special satellite feeds running through the steel and the concrete to get the communications that we needed. Otherwise we would never have gotten signals in or out.”
He nodded. “I know, and this is only temporary here, so it’s a matter of doing what we can.”
“Got it,” she noted. “Let me get started then.” She started opening up the rest of the boxes. She looked around and saw a couple folding tables off to the side. She walked over, set one of them on its feet, and started unpacking the electronics. This was her field, no doubt, but she did worry about it. “Does anybody know we’re here?” she tossed out. When a sudden silence came from behind her, she pivoted and looked at the two men, both staring at her. “Please tell me that’s a no?”
Terk shook his head. “Nobody knows, at least not this location.”
“But do some people know we’re alive?”
He nodded slowly.
Her eyebrows shot up. “Is that safe?”
“We have to trust somebody, and I’ve chosen to trust my brother,” he replied coolly.
She stared at him for a long moment. “I didn’t even know you had one.”
His lips quirked. “Not only do I have a brother but he’s a twin.”
“Holy shit.” She stared at him. “How did you ever hide that?”
“I didn’t even try to. My brother was also working in the US Navy for a long time. Now he works for a private security company.”
She wasn’t sure she liked the sound of that. She studied him carefully. “Is it safe? Because, even though he might believe in his company, that doesn’t mean that everybody in his company believes in him.”
“And that’s a very good observation,” Terk noted, “and I appreciate the concern, but, in this case, I do trust him and the company.”
She shook her head. “A lot of people are in companies.” She hesitated. “You can’t trust all of them.”
“I get that,” he noted. “And, if you want to walk, you can at any time.”
She frowned. “I don’t have any place to go, and you know it.”
“Then trust me, just like you’ve trusted me all these years.”
She let out a slow deep breath. “It’s not that easy.”
“No, it isn’t,” he agreed, “and, right now, I guess trusting me is probably even harder than normal because we somehow ended up in this situation.”
“Yes, but I can’t blame that on you.”
“Why not? I do.”
She shook her head. “No, that’s not on you. We were disbanded. We were supposed to be gone, and you were heading off.” She frowned. “Oh, you were going to Texas.”
He nodded. “Exactly.”
“Something about …” And then her face cleared. “Your brother. You were going to see your brother, weren’t you?”
“Yes, I just never made it that clear.”
“No, and I wasn’t really reading between the lines because I was more focused on finishing off what we had to finish off.”
At that, from behind her, Damon asked Terk, “Any update on Celia?”
“Not at the moment.” Terk chewed his bottom lip.
Damon suggested, “Maybe it’s time to check in.”
“I would like to,” Terk agreed, “but I’m not getting any answer from the compound.”
“Ouch,” Damon replied. “That’s not cool.”
She pointed at the tables. “Give me a minute and I’ll set it up. Are we talking about Legendary Security out of Texas?”
He nodded. “Your brother works for them,” she realized slowly.
“Yes, is that a problem?”
“No, but we’ve used them for various things over the years.”
“We’ve used them when I needed help,” Terk agreed, “or if we needed something special that they had access to.”
“I didn’t know it was your brother though.”
“That’s because I didn’t advertise it. That’s probably a good thing, or he’d be dead right now.”
She stiffened. “Have you checked? Is there any chance that they’ve been targeted too?”
“Well, they have been targeted,” he confirmed. “And in a way that you won’t like. And since I don’t know the status of any of it right now”— he shrugged—“ I just have to let it lie and to trust in them.”
“We don’t do trust well,” she noted.
He gave a bark of laughter. “I thought that was my line.”
She felt a reluctant amusement tugging at her lips. “No, you’re right, but I’d feel better if you got an update from them.”
“I was just about to. I spoke to my brother earlier, but we got cut off. I haven’t been able to connect since.” Just then his phone rang. He pulled it up, looked at it. “That’s him now.”
“Put it on Speaker,” she ordered.
He raised an eyebrow and studied her.
She nodded. “We’re all in this now. Let’s not have any secrets, half-truths, or partial information come between us. There’s just the three of us for now, so let’s see who we can trust, who we can use, and who we can’t.”
He gave a quick nod. “Merk?”
“Yeah, it’s me. Jesus, bro, when you bring it on, you bring it on.”
“Is she alive?” he asked urgently.
“You have no freaking idea.”
Dale Mayer. Damon’s Deal (Kindle Locations 593-652). Valley Publishing Ltd..
What happened at Legendary Security with Cecilia is revealed. Ice and Levi have things under control there and they will assist with getting communications set up.
There is so much that happens in this book, as Damon reveals his attraction to Tasha. That’s something he has been hiding for years as has she. I truly loved the reaction to Merk when he shows up to help.
I couldn’t stop reading this book, every page brings new challenges and opposition as they work to locate the rest of the team.
I can’t wait for the next book in this series.
5 Contented Purrs for Dale!
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Dale Mayer is a USA Today bestselling author best known for her Psychic Visions and Family Blood Ties series. Her contemporary romances are raw and full of passion and emotion (Second Chances, SKIN), her thrillers will keep you guessing (By Death series), and her romantic comedies will keep you giggling (It’s a Dog’s Life and Charmin Marvin Romantic Comedy series).
She honors the stories that come to her – and some of them are crazy and break all the rules and cross multiple genres!
To go with her fiction, she also writes nonfiction in many different fields with books available on resume writing, companion gardening and the US mortgage system. She has recently published her Career Essentials Series. All her books are available in print and ebook format.