USA Today Bestselling Author
Gage hadn’t told the rest of his team, but he’d planned to meet up with Lorelei after their team disbanded. A little one-on-one time was needed to see if all the sparks they’d felt over the last few years were the real thing. He’d deliberately avoided getting involved with anyone he worked with, so this seemed like the perfect opportunity. Until all the team is decimated …
Lorelei was in Manchester, hoping to run into Gage, but after a car accident that sent her to hospital with an injured leg, she had no idea what had happened to the others, until Terk contacted her. Once he realized what had befallen her, he figured out that her accident was likely no accident and probably the same potential annihilation that his team had experienced. Terk coaxes Lorelei to live in their temporary new headquarters, where she finds out Gage hadn’t contacted her by choice but because he couldn’t.
Now on the mend, Gage is determined to keep her safe, only that’s much easier said than done, as the attacks turn on her and just … won’t … stop.
If you haven’t read the other books in this series, STOP, go back and read them first. This book starts where the last one left off. Gage is now awake although he’s still not at full power. He’s just spoken with Damon, Tasha and they introduced him to Sophia, who is Wade’s partner. Terkel has just joined them when he gets a text, from a Lorilei. The name doesn’t click until Gage says they all do, she worked with them through the government. As soon as Terk texts her back his phone rings and he’s given a series of numbers to type in. Then they are connected on a secure line.
Lorilei doesn’t know exactly what’s going on, but she arrived in Manchester the day the team went down and the following day she was in an accident that put her in the hospital until now. Now her hotel room is bugged and she’s not safe. She still has all her government clearances though so that’s a plus.
Although Gage doesn’t want her put in more danger, the only option for her is to stay with them. They don’t have resources to guard her otherwise. Plus they could always use the extra help especially with her access.
Gage and Terk went to meet up with Merk and end up in an attempted ambush. Fortunately they get a prisoner out of it. The information they gather isn’t unexpected but it’s even more concerning because of Lorilei.
This is a favorite scene.
He nodded. “You’re in danger.”
“I know that,” she replied. “That’s why we moved me here. Remember? So, what’s changed?”
He winced. “It’s not that anything has changed, but our prisoner has been talking.”
“That’s good, isn’t it? So what was he talking about that has you so wound up?”
“He just told us that, since the attack on your life failed, the original contract killer— who happens to be our most recent dead guy from the park earlier today— had already hired a friend to finish the job on you because he was taking on this other job to finish us.”
“Good Lord,” Lorelei said, “so I do have a killer after me.” She stared at Gage in disbelief. “Why? How is that even a thing?”
“I don’t know, but apparently it is,” he murmured, as he sank down on the bed beside her. “So … I got scared and just had that moment of ‘Oh my God, they might have already got her,’ you know?”
“Well, I’m not against the greeting just now”— she smiled—“ and the reasoning behind it is a little unnerving at first, but I’m fine. And, as long as I’m here, I’ll be safe.”
He shook his head. “No way, you can’t stay here,” he murmured. “Anything can happen at any time.”
“Maybe so,” she noted, refusing to be pulled into his worry. “But you’ll take care of me, and I know you can do that.”
He frowned. “And what if I fail?”
“Sadly you will have to live with that regret for the rest of your life,” she replied, “but I won’t care because I won’t be here.” He stared at her as she shrugged. “I tend to get a bit fatalistic about the whole thing,” she explained. “I mean, even when I worked for the government, it was something that I always knew could happen, but it wasn’t something that I ever focused on. And I’m certainly not focusing on it now because honestly, it doesn’t seem like something I want to waste my time and energy on.”
“It’s hardly a waste to reevaluate your life and to try to be safe,” he murmured.
“But how does any of this help me?” she asked. “It only really came home to me when I realized that the hit-and-run could have been somebody intentionally trying to take me out. It’s an odd thought, but I’ve never mattered to anybody enough to be worth killing.” As he stared at her, horrified, her lips twitched. “Yes, I’m making light of it,” she teased. “Obviously I’ll take this very seriously, and it is a little disconcerting.”
“Of course it is,” Gage agreed. Then he picked up her fingers, sliding his between them. “It is also something that I need you to take very seriously because anybody could be the next contract killer.”
“Well, I’m sure you’re online, tracking that guy you have in custody already, trying to find out who on his list of associates is connected and who else in this wonderful world of contract killers is involved,” she noted. “So I’m in good hands. I mean, look at us. Between all of us here, we ran huge departments. We set up all kinds of missions and investigative cases and intel-gathering ops,” she added. “I mean, this is hardly new for us. What’s new is that we are the ones with targets on our backs, and we’re trying to save ourselves this time, but we have all the skills we could possibly ever need. So we can do this.”
He smiled, leaned over, and kissed her very gently this time. “How very true.” Lifting her laptop off her lap, he asked, “Now, are you ready for bed?”
“Whoa, whoa, whoa,” she protested. “No, I’m not.”
He looked at her, and then he waggled his eyebrows.
“Oh, no, you don’t.” She laughed. “You don’t get to just waltz in here and sweep me off my feet, thinking that’ll be enough.”
“Why not?” he asked. “It isn’t enough?”
She was still laughing. “But, now that you are here, you can help me to the bathroom.”
When he had completely cleared off her bed, he flipped back the covers and helped her to her feet, taking her to the bathroom door. “Call out if you need me. I’ll be within hearing distance. Then I’ll go have a shower.”
She nodded, feeling some of the fatigue from earlier settle in now that he was back again. She hated to admit it but figured she had probably been waiting for him all along. She closed the bathroom door and quickly brushed her teeth, thankful she could bring her things from the hotel. She smiled at the thought and wondered at the events of the day. But then she knew she was in the best possible hands. So, whatever happened, it’s all good. By the time she was done and headed back out, she felt shaky again.
He took a critical look at her, then nodded. “Yeah, it’s definitely bedtime for you.”
She rolled her eyes. “Stop being quite so protective.”
“No can do,” he replied, with a bright smile. “On the other hand, maybe being protective will keep you safe this time.”
“Maybe,” she murmured, then she slipped back into bed, wincing.
He asked, “Did they give you some painkillers?”
She hesitated, then spoke. “Yes, but I don’t like taking them.”
He shook his head, grimacing. “I think it probably would help you get a good night’s sleep.”
“But they make me so groggy in the morning,” she murmured.
“You’ll be fine,” he said. “You’ll be absolutely fine.” He looked in her things and brought out the medication for her.
She took half the dosage required, then snuggled into the bed. “Go have a shower,” she mumbled, already feeling the fatigue hitting her. He disappeared into the bathroom. She laid here for a long moment, wondering what his plan was when he returned. But, as injured as she was, chances were he wouldn’t do anything.
He also wasn’t talking about the trouble with his own leg, which had seemed to get worse as the day progressed. Had he been injured in a way that he hadn’t told her about? Thoughts like that stopped her from falling asleep. When he entered the bedroom with just a towel around his waist, she murmured, “How badly injured were you?”
“If you mean the leg,” he replied, “that appears to be more of an energy glitch.”
She pondered that for a moment. “Does that make sense to you?”
“Meaning that you don’t know what an energy glitch is, right? Well, hey, welcome to our world. And, no, it doesn’t make any sense to me, but it seems to be what we’re talking about.”
“Wow. Okay, so how do you fix an energy glitch?”
“Now Terk would say, Time, energy, and healing abilities,” Gage explained, “but, in my case, I don’t really know what’s required. I keep trying to give it time to heal, but he would say it’s probably connected to my own energy drain.”
“And is that something you can heal?” she asked.
He looked at her, then nodded. “It is, indeed. It just may take a little longer than I thought.”
She smiled. “In my opinion, we always think injuries take longer to heal than we thought.”
He nodded, then walked over and shut down the light in the bedroom. “Can you sleep now?”
“I think so,” she replied. “I presume you’re sleeping in here with me.”
“Yep,” he confirmed. “We’ll be short on space as more guys get back, so I figured we might as well get used to it.”
“Fine,” she said, “and at least I know that nobody will slip in and slice my throat in the night.”
“That is very true.” Gage slid into the bed beside her. He shuffled gently, trying to get comfortable, and then he tugged her ever closer. “Now sleep,” he murmured. “I promise that nobody will attack you in the night.”
She wondered about that for a long moment and then realized, at least if they did attack, it wouldn’t happen quietly, not with him around. She closed her eyes and slept.
Dale Mayer. Gage’s Goal (Kindle Locations 1000-1063). Valley Publishing Ltd..
Gage is slowly admitting he’s in love with Lorilei. They’ve been sort of working toward it for a while but while Gage was working with the team he thought more to protect her.
The threats to her lead to some very interesting encounters, and a premonition from Terk.
I found myself holding my breath a lot as this story continues. They really need answers but until they get ahold of someone higher up that’s not happening.
So much happens in this book, I really love Gage and Lorilei they are perfect together. I really can’t wait for the next book in this series. The lead in at the end just has me wanting more.
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.