Yay lovely ones! The second in the Sons of Darkness series is HOT HOT HOT off the presses. The first is His as Payment, but my latest can be read as a stand alone. It’s dark and steamy, dangerous and sinful. You won’t believe just how far our hero goes to avenge his father’s near assassination. As always, FREE to read if you have a KU Subscription. Ready for a taste?
TAKEN AS COLLATERAL
I took her because I needed a hostage. I kept her because I wanted her.
Francesca Alessandro was just meant to be collateral, held captive as a warning to her father, but then she tried to fight me. She ended up sore and soaked as I taught her a lesson with my belt and then screaming with every savage climax as I taught her to obey in a much more shameful way.
She’s mine now. Mine to keep. Mine to protect. Mine to use as hard and as often as I please.
Taking her minutes before her wedding had been easy.
Keeping her might be something else.
But I was the kind of man who didn’t take no for an answer.
“So, I think we should discuss a few very important rules.” I moved to sit on the edge of the bed, giving the beautiful woman a stern look. “You are indeed my prisoner. You will do nothing without my approval. You will be supplied with clothing, food, even the wine you seem to adore, but they will be doled out as you learn to obey. When you’re disobedient, the punishment will be swift and harsh. I am a reasonable man, Francesca, but I will not be crossed in any manner.”
“How dare you treat me this way!” she exclaimed, hissing as her lovely mouth twisted.
“How dare I?” I laughed and shook my head. “You should know I’m your only means of survival. I suggest you learn to submit.”
“Over my dead body.”
She was a mafia princess, a woman unused to being disciplined in any manner. She’d been pampered from the moment she was born, treated as if she would one day be a queen. To me, she was just something to barter with.
“Fuck you!” she snapped, jerking her arm as she attempted to claw my face.
“And that punishment will begin today. Make no mistake, I am a dangerous man.” Fisting her hair, I rolled her over, ripping down the shorts I’d provided. Now I owned every inch of her.
I brought my hand down in a swift manner, even as she struggled to get out of my hold.
“No. No!” she squealed, whipping her arm back for protection.
I spanked her long and hard, moving from one side to the other, enjoying the building heat in my palm.
“Let me go!” She continued to struggle, her actions only fueling my desire. She had no idea what I could do to her.
What I would do to her.
I tangled my fingers in her long strands, yanking as I lowered my head. “I suggest you stop fighting or I will pull out my belt. You will learn your place.” I could see the fire in her eyes, the kind that kept my cock at full attention, burning desire raging through every cell and muscle.
“Like I said. Fuck. You,” she spat, remaining defiant.
I smacked her again and again, until her bottom was hot to the touch, her skin a rosy pink.
And my cock aching with need, my balls tight as drums.
“Make no mistake, Francesca. I. Will. Own. You. And there is nothing you can do about it.”
Only when she was finally subdued did I stop, taking several deep breaths. She was my retaliation, a necessity in a world where men ruled, and women were considered nothing but playthings.
Only this woman was different. Intelligent.
And I would enjoy breaking her.
* * *
Three Days Earlier
I’d been initiated into the mafia at eleven.
I’d witnessed my first contract hit at twelve.
I’d broken a man’s spirit and his body at eighteen.
I’d murdered a traitorous enemy at nineteen.
I’d watched my mother murdered in cold blood at twenty-five.
That’s when time stopped.
Be careful of the devil lurking inside.
He will steal your soul.
I stood at the window, snorting at the thought. I’d been summoned to my father’s house and into his expansive office overlooking a tropical pool and cabana. The light California breeze created a rippling effect in the shallow, crystal clear waters, the entire setting serene.
But I knew better.
This wasn’t a casual request by any means. This was all about business, my father’s twisted and very brutal business. He called the operation a functional need in a dysfunctional world, lending money to those who were already ‘entitled.’ The borrowed money came at a significant price, whether paid back in cash or in body fluids. That was only a small part of the operation, the rest centering around party favors and various real estate developments. He’d coined the phrase years before, serving up whatever flavor of drug the customer wanted. And he’d become a very wealthy man in the process.
There also hadn’t been a building built in Los Angeles that didn’t have the mark of the Cappalini family. My father liked to say he owned the cops and the mayor’s office. Hell, even half the players in the entertainment world couldn’t throw a party without his approval.
I heard his footsteps in the hallway behind me and bristled, my grip on the very expensive glass of scotch tightening. I caught a single glimpse of his grim expression in the reflection of the bulletproof glass and resisted snarling. This wasn’t the time or place to get into yet another vicious argument. I could also see who he considered his second in command, Grinder’s massive form standing in the doorway. He wasn’t a man I cared for in any regard, and the feeling was obviously mutual.
“So good of you to come, Michael.” My father immediately walked toward the bar, his long strides wasting no time. “You can leave us, Grinder.”
“Yes, sir,” Grinder said after a slight hesitation, his dark eyes boring into mine. What did the asshole think, that I was going to hurt my own father?
My anger immediately flared. My father and I always sparred, no matter the discussion.
“How many times have I asked you not to use my given name, Ricardo?” Ricardo Cappalini was a staunch believer in the old ways, cultures learned long ago in the darkened Italian streets. He’d come from nothing, maneuvering through famine and violence to claw his way to America. He’s lost everything along the way, including any concept of humanity; however, family meant everything to him.
Or so he continued to tell me.
He’d never proven anything but that he remained a violent and bitter man.
Since the death of my mother during a horrific attack, I’d walked away from anything having to do with his family values and the tyranny that came with it. My father’s brand of revenge had also nearly cost him his freedom.
I was the bastard son, a joke in his circle of great mafia leaders. It didn’t matter that I made a significant amount of money from making movies, I was the heir apparent. The fact I didn’t give a shit meant I was a thorn in his side. To him, I was nothing more than a useless movie star. I brought the scotch to my lips, savoring the slight burn as the liquid slid down the back of my throat.
“If you think I’m going to use the ridiculous name of Kelan Rock for any reason, you’re wrong,” my father said in a breathless and exasperated manner. We’d had this conversation a solid ten times.
I waited as I heard the ice plopping in his glass, tinkling against the dense lead crystal. I had to admit, his urgent message had piqued my interest. “What do you want, Father? I have a premiere to get ready for.”
“If you spent more time with your family responsibilities instead of that bullshit you’re into, we might not be in this mess!” His deep baritone reverberated even with the high ceilings.
And the worry laced in his tone.
I curtailed my rage, turning to face him. “What mess are we talking about this time?” I was no fool. We always talked in some manner of code, even though the entire house and grounds was swept by one of his capos at least twice a day. The FBI were always hunting.
He took a swig of his drink before moving in my direction, keeping his voice low. “Grinder and Tony got wind of a takeover attempt.”
Two of his most loyal capos, soldiers who performed the most heinous deeds, well rewarded for their silence. They kept their ears to the streets.
“Takeover? By whom?” I knew the other four mafia families within the United States more intimately than even my father knew. None of them would dare try to encroach on my father’s organization. They knew how savage he could be when pushed. I watched as a single bead of sweat trickled down the side of his face. He was nervous.
“A branch of the Massimo family. Did you see the morning paper?” He tossed a copy in my direction, a sneer on his face.
I hadn’t paid attention to the Los Angeles Timesfor years. The reporters were jaded in their viewpoints, preferring to err on the side of caution. And politics. Then again, my father hadn’t been able to purchase the rag. I eased my drink to the table, unfolding the paper. The headlines were bold, meant to sell.
Murder: Is Los Angeles Prepared for Another Turf War?
Sighing, I shook my head as I read the scandalous piece, the story meant to heighten fears, headlining organized crime in the usual pompous fashion. Two men had been killed outside a famous nightclub, the very one my father frequented. I had no doubt they were my father’s soldiers. The scene caught by some unknown photographer would no doubt make him famous. Bloody and horrific. The picture was graphic enough, actually highlighting the bodies of two individuals lying in the middle of the street. “Two of your men?”
My father nodded, his hand shaking as he attempted to take another gulp. “Marcos and Sam. Two of my best men.”
“And they were protecting you?”
He eyed me warily. “As they always do.”
Ricardo took his time refilling his drink before answering. The attack had unnerved him. “Massimo’s men. At least from what I’ve heard.”
I was forced to reflect on everything I’d been taught over the years, things I’d prefer to forget. This news could be devastating. “You’re talking about the Massimos out of Italy? You must be joking.”
The Massimo family were as powerful in Italy as the Bratvas were in Russia and while they were considered extremists, preferring the old methods of handling issues, they also stood by their honor. Coming into America and usurping already existing authority wasn’t their style. Killing two of my father’s men was either an act of vengeance or a prelude to war. Either way, the danger had just escalated. I was pissed at the thought, let alone the interference that the two murders might cause in my life. I tossed the paper, grabbing my drink. I didn’t need to read the rest of the details.
Ricardo simply gave me a harsh glare.
The taste of the three-hundred-dollar bottle of scotch was suddenly bitter. It was my turn to be civil. For my father, this could mean an all-out war, something the city of Los Angeles didn’t need. “What are your plans for retaliation and what does this have to do with me?”
“The Saltoris are also involved.”
“Louis Saltori?” My father had kept various aspects of business from his only son. My thoughts drifted to Saltori’s son, a man who’d been in and out of my life since entering show business. I was beginning to feel a trap had been set. The Saltoris had been small players, although their connection to the Italian Borgata was well known. In order to keep the peace, my father had allowed them a piece of the organization, businesses that Louis ran with an iron fist. The mere two percent provided to my father represented a substantial amount of cash through the years.
My father had always known the Massimos would eventually come to America, but the timing was interesting.
I could smell a betrayal.
So… What do you think? I so hope you enjoyed!
Kisses and spanks…