Silent Dolls by Rita Herron (Detective Ellie Reeves #1)
English | 2020|Romance MM| ePUB | 2.9 MB
Ricardo Torralba and August Morrison don’t agree on much besides the fact that they hate each other. According to Ricardo, August is a spoiled brat who really needs to knock off the sass once in a while. August insists that Ricardo needs a sense of humor, a good lay, or a well-placed bullet. Maybe all three.
Fortunately, the assassin’s profession is a solitary one, and they can go about their lives without getting in each other’s way.
When a contracted hit turns out to be a setup for both of them, they narrowly escape with their lives. Now, even if they don’t like it (spoiler: they don’t), August and Ricardo have to work together if they want a shot at survival.
In between firefights and questionable interrogation methods as they hunt down their would-be killer, the cranky assassins discover that under all that mutual loathing is a spark of chemistry they can’t ignore. They want to ignore it, they probably should ignore it, but August can’t help flirting to annoy Ricardo, and Ricardo can think of at least one way to shut him up for a while.
But they need to focus, damn it, and figure out who’s
gunning for them and why.
Assuming they don’t kill each other first.
“Why the fuck are you…just…why?” Torralba demanded, and ah, finally, up came the gun. How friendly. “What are you doing here?” His voice lowered dangerously as he stepped closer.
August was two inches taller than Torralba, but there was an incredible intensity to the other man that could probably back down giants. Something about him—everything about him right now—screamed danger.
Inexplicably, the fact that Torralba was showing his real self made August more comfortable with him. Letting yourself be seen as what you actually were was honest, and he appreciated that. It was one of the nice things about Ricardo Torralba: whenever possible, he was honest. It was possibly the only nice thing about him, other than his ability to set paper on fire just by smoldering at it.
August wasn’t honest. Being truthful had never gone well for him. “I’m scoping the place for a future hit,” he said smoothly, glancing down at the wine again. It really was an excellent vintage, and he hadn’t bought a Christmas gift for his sister yet. This might be just the thing. “The Baldwins have signed a contract to sell the place to a Russian caviar czar that a client of mine has a grudge against.”
Torralba narrowed his eyes. “You’re here to kill Lance Baldwin too.”
God damn it, why did the corollary to his honesty have to be an ability to tell when other people were lying? August was good at lying, for Christ’s sake! Only two people ever saw through his lies—his mother, and Ricardo Motherfucking Torralba. “What do you mean, ‘too’?” August asked.
“Well, I’m not actually here because I had a change of heart and decided to go into another line of work,” Torralba replied. “Who hired you?”
“Who hired you?”
He gritted his teeth. “Don’t fuck with me on this, Morrison. Who. Hired. You?”
Ah, now they were getting into more comfortable territory. “I don’t think I feel like sharing that information with you, ‘Marty,’” August replied, careful not to let his smile show his teeth. It had been several years since he and Torralba had seriously clashed, and he’d been too incautious last time, too swept up in the adrenaline to be careful with his image. His best defense was in being underestimated. “Not without getting something in exchange.” Show me your cards, Torralba.
To August’s absolute astonishment, Torralba started to talk. “No name or direct contact given. Just five million dollars in cash, half up front…yeah.” He nodded grimly as he apparently read August’s expression. “You were hired by the same person.”
“That’s actually kind of amazing,” August said, genuinely impressed. “Prying the truth out of people by telling them the truth, that’s some real special agent style there.” He waited, but of course the man gave nothing away. “I will figure out your secret past at some point,” August informed him. Most of the hitmen he knew were more than happy to tell you how they’d gotten into it, but Torralba never spoke about himself. It was infuriating in a way that only a naturally talkative person understood. “And it was five-point-five million, actually.”